An Intimate Look at Echoes' Mid-Week Respite in Makati
by Jace Amodo, February 07, 2019 10:30am
Photo by Jace Amodo/Inside Manila. Shot using the new OPPO R-17 Pro.
Working professionals rarely feel the need for a mid-week escape, but rare it has to go. And because "good music, good food, and good company" is the fad and mantra of today's society, we look at one of Metro Manila's rare hump day programs: “Before Midnight.”
“Before Midnight,” a monthly nightcap in Warehouse Eight, La Fuerza, Makati is nothing like a Makatizen's usual hangout—this happens only on Wednesdays, from 7 pm and exactly until 11:59 pm. It is organized by Echoes PH, a Manila-based independent music and video platform that provides musicians a space for self-expression. For over five hours, the stripped-down concert will feature musicians as storytellers—no special effects, more raw and intimate—for guests to savor.
Here, generation labels are non-existent; there's no such thing as a Millennial, a Baby Boomer, or a Gen Z. “Before Midnight” makes a case for breaking barriers, connecting communities through its openness, and allows guests to communicate and therefore build legitimate connections, which the current generation often forgets.
One look at Warehouse Eight’s doorstep undeniably spills curiosity to think through. And to step foot inside, one floor up to their pantry is something guests won’t be able to unsee. It's not just the warm lighting, simple furniture, and high ceilings; the people make the small pantry a spacious comfort zone just by being in it.
What makes “Before Midnight” a worthy and unique mid-week escape, is its exclusivity and the thought of putting together 25 people in an intimate setting. Every person has clear branding that could have easily been overlooked in a larger setting. Here, the word "stranger" has a lighter meaning. Meet a fan of avocados and another of pizza with pineapples, someone with a penchant for memes, someone who prefers Star Trek over Star Wars, and, well, a writer who obsesses over the point of contentions. Everyone's here—introverts, extroverts, ambiverts—and everyone's schmoozing, and it all happens naturally.
There's nothing like your favorite musicians to serenade your night away. However, “Before Midnight" keeps their audience on their toes as they keep the featured musicians behind closed doors, revealing the artists on the day of the event, resonating the beauty of surprise and spontaneity. And because it's a quaint place, the chances of meeting the musicians up close—even having a beer with them—are undeniably high. Guests can also take center stage because by "conclusion-o'clock," the floor frees for an open jam.
Every session, Echoes try to bring a chef or a food pop-up one probably didn't know exists. This initiative fares to a lot of guests—foodies and not. It does not only up the ante of the nightcap but also allows them to try new foods or variations. As for the drinks, beer is the question and yes is the answer because it's free-flowing. Need we say more?
At “Before Midnight's” core is a brilliant concept, almost rivaling community hangoutsin the metro outside its reception date. This is a gathering filled with people, diverse work tales, and soulful music—a fully realized storytelling that speaks of today’s societal culture.